All-Time List of Canadian Transit Systems

by David A. Wyatt

Niagara Falls, Ontario

Principal System

Niagara Falls, Wesley Park and Clifton Tramway horsecar (NFPL) Niagara Falls, Wesley Park and Clifton Tramway Company (06 December 1886 - 1901)
Incorporated August 1886 (Ont.) Acquired by NS&T interests late 1899 or early 1900. (Mills 1967, photo: Niagara Falls Public Library).

Niagara, St. Catharines and Toronto [Niagara Falls] 307 on Queen Street 1945 Niagara, St. Catharines and Toronto Railway Company (1901 - 15 October 1960)
Incorporated 1898. Interurban and city transit operator. Acquired in 1908 by the Canadian Northern Railway which on 20 December 1918 became Canadian National Railways. After 1922 the railway was designated the Canadian National Electric Railways: NS&T Railway District. All bus operations conducted under the name Canadian National Transportation Limited as part of NS&T services. (Mills 1967).

Greater Niagara Transit Commission [Niagara Falls] 10 GM TGH-3102 old look (1968 Sep. Peter Cox coll.) Greater Niagara Transit Commission (15 October 1960 - ?)
(Dawes et al. 1972, photo: Peter Cox collection).

Niagara Transit 14 (GM new look) (W.E. Miller 1983) Niagara Transit (? - 2008)
Operation assumed by the City of Niagara Falls transportation department 2007 and subsequently renamed (Wikipedia 2010). Seasonal (university school year) intermunicipal routes also connect Niagara Falls to Welland and St. Catharines. (Perera 1973, CUTA 1976-77, CUTA 1989, CUTA 1991/2, CUTA 1992, Chow 1998, photo: W.E. Miller [Peter Cox collection]).

Niagara Transit logo
system logo
Service area population72,000 (1991)
Vehicle fleet28 buses (2000)
Employees43 (1991)
Data source:CUTA 1991/2
CTHF/SSG 2000
website 2010 (logo)

Niagara Falls Transit (2008 - present)
Operation by the City of Niagara Falls transportation department (Wikipedia). From 07 September 2010 to 21 April 2011 also operates a weekday intermunicipal transit service between Niagara Falls and Fort Erie. Responsible for certain Niagara Region Transit routes from mid September 2011.

Niagara Falls Transit logo
system logo
Data source:Wikipedia 2010

Secondary System

Niagara Parks People Mover (1986 - August 2012)
Shuttle bus service operated by the Niagara Parks Commission along the Niagara River from above the falls to Queenston Heights Park. Service rebranded April 2012. (Website 2000)

WEGO Visitor Transportation System (13 August 2012 - present)
WEGO (“We Go”) is jointly operated by Niagara Falls Transit and the Niagara Parks Commission. It replaced NFT's Falls Shuttle routes and the NPC's People Mover route (CPTdb Wiki 2012). From June 2013 WEGO also provided service between Niagara Falls and Niagara-on-the-Lake.

Niagara Falls Funiculars

Leander Colt (circa 1869 - 1889)
Water powered funicular built to descend to the bank of the Whirlpool at what is now Colt's Point. Damaged by a land slide and out of service by 1889. (Wright)

Whirlpool Rapids Incline (after 1876 - 05 May 1934)
Steam powered funicular to the rapids. Purchased circa 1886 by the Whirlpool Rapids Company and converted to water power. Acquired 1892 by the Niagara Falls Park and River Railway Company and converted to electric power. From 1901 NFP&R owned by the International Railway Company. McGraw 1918 lists Whirlpool Rapids Elevator Co. as the operator of an incline railway at Niagara Falls. NFP&R wound up in 1932 and incline subsequently acquired by the Niagara Parks Commission. Funicular destroyed by fire 1934 and replaced with an elevator service called the Great Gorge Trip, renamed Great Gorge Adventure in 1989. (Wright)

Clifton Incline (1894 - 1976)
Constructed and owned by the Niagara Falls Park and River Railway Company, after 1901 controlled by the International Railway Company. Incline ownership assumed in 1932 by the Niagara Parks Commission. Renamed Maid of the Mist Incline 1973. Closed for reconstruction in the fall of 1976. (Wright)

Maid of the Mist Incline (14 May 1977 - October 1990)
Closed and replaced by higher capacity elevators 1990. (Wright)

Horseshoe Falls Incline Railway (08 October 1966 - present)
Constructed by the Niagara Parks Commission. In the 1980s became known as the Falls Incline Railway. Seasonal operation. Closed for reconstruction at the end of the 2012 season. Reopened 16 August 2013. From 2013 was planned to operate year round. (Mills 1967, The New Electric Railway Journal, Vol. III, No. 3, Spring 1991, p. 38, Wright).

Whirlpool Aerocar

The Niagara Spanish Aerocar Co., Ltd. (08 August 1916 - 1961?)
Operating an aerial cableway spanning the Niagara gorge. (McGraw 1918). The Spanish company owning the installation was Estudios y Obras de Ingenieria. Appears in 1920 photo as Whirlpool Spanish Aero Car and on 1927 NGRy brochure as the Spanish Aerocar. Was operated by the Harold Brooker family (from 1941?) until 1961 when the assets were purchased by A. Blake Robertson.

A. Blake Robertson (1961 - 1968)
Purchased by the NPC in late 1968. (Seibel)

Niagara Parks Commission (1969 - present)
Circa 1970 photo shows signage reading Niagara Spanish Whirlpool Aerocar (Seibel, p. 193).

Modes

Animal railway06 December 1886 - 1900
Funicularscirca 1869 - present
Electric railway15 August 1900 - 26 November 1947
Aerial Cableway08 August 1916 - present (tourist season)
Motor bus1935 or before - present

Niagara Falls Park and River Interurban

NFP&R/Niagara Gorge Route (Donald P. Evans collection)

Niagara Falls Park and River Railway Company (24 May 1893 - 11 September 1932)
Incorporated 1892 (Ont.) (Due says 1891). Acquired 1901 by the International Railway Company and operated as the Niagara Falls Park and River Division of the International Railway Company of Niagara Falls, NY. From 1900 to 1902 IRyCo 's Canadian operating arm was the Buffalo Railway Company (Inc. 1900 (Dom.)). Operations were coördinated with the independent Niagara Gorge Railway on the New York side of the river to allow a loop ride along both banks. Photographs dated to the 1920's show the cars were lettered The Falls and Whirlpool Rapids Route (Seibel, p. 96). (photo Donald P. Evans collection)

References


Copyright ©1989-2014 David A. Wyatt. All Rights Reserved.
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The author is always interested in comments, corrections and further information. Please email to:

dawwpg@shaw.ca
This page last modified: Saturday, 18-Jan-2014 18:08:36 CST